I have recently become interested in Bitcoin and it's potential to transform the travel industry. At my hostel, Pacific Tradewinds in San Francisco, we started excepting Bitcoin as payment and it's been a very interesting experiment so far. Unlike credit cards, there are no transaction fees associated with accepting Bitcoin. And, because Bitcoin is so new, it has exposed the hostel to a completely new clientele (mostly computer geeks and hackers). In addition, I have been contacted by journalists who are keen to learn more about businesses who are accepting this new currency.
Then today I read about a travel agency in Bulgaria called Simply Travel who is using Bitcoin to pay their accommodation providers in other countries. Immediately I began thinking about how Bitcoin could become a real game changer for the travel industry.
Gregor Amon, the CEO at Simply Travel:
“In the travel industry, we transfer a lot of money internationally. It’s less of an issue in Europe where a SEPA bank transfer is free and usually at the receiver’s account within 24 hours, but everything outside of Europe is a big pain,”
The complete article is located here.
For example, what if a traveler paid hostel A cash at the front desk in exchange for a voucher that entitles them to a free stay at hostel B. Hostel A then only needs to send Bitcoin to hostel B to transfer the money? What if this was all easily handled by the front desk software?
Anyone else out there considered accepting Bitcoin?
If you are not sure what Bitcoin is, watch this video.